Friday, May 05, 2006

The Memphis 30 Visit Blog Town

I was sitting in the Local Cafe yesterday drinking my high test and eating a ham and onion sandwich. Gathered at the table with me were Pastor Bob Rambo of TBRBC and YP (the young plumber we are trying to get re-instated with the denomination. He had been sent home from the foreign field for working with CMA plumbers to install new water facilities in regions that had never had facilities of any kind much less the "Good New" kind. His Regional Director had told him he could not work with anyone who had not MARKED his LAND with our denomination only. YP questioned this and was sent home, branded as unfit to plumb for us anymore.) Also with us was Roscoe Bigalow and his son, Ronnie Duke. They had been to a Little League game and were celebrating with hot fudge cake and ice cream. I was eyeing Ronnie Duke with a worried eye. He had already eaten three peices and was working on the fourth. He was turning a pale shade of green but not slowing down at all. He had fudge all over his face and running down his Little League uniform.

I love eating ham and onion sandwiches, especially the way Merle makes them here at the Local Cafe. I was having trouble, though, eating with Ronnie Duke sitting across from me. I kept having visions of a chocolate volcano erupting.

Another negative was the fact that Kevin Bussey was "piled up" in the booth where I usually hold court. He had his hockey stick with him which he carries everywhere he goes to remind people not to be hypocrites. He was drinking a latte from Merle's new machine. In addition to that he was eating Merle's famous 32 ounce BBQ sandwich. He had BBQ sauce all over his face.

This just hurt the joy of eating my ham and onion sandwich even more. He was also being eyed by three people in the booth with him with great distain. Dorcas Hawker, Wes Kenney and Jeff R. Young were with him but they were not eating. They were fasting for the IMB meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. They were just drinking water. Kevin would look up from his BBQ and grin through the sauce from time to time and say: "I promise I am starting my fast on Monday." With that said; he chewed off another bite of BBQ and grinned again. Sister Dorcas said she was thinking about suing him for assault with a food substance. Jeff asked her if that was possible and Wes said; "Legal or not, just do it." I chimed in with Wes and said; "I will pay the legal fees, just do it." I looked back at Ronnie Duke and decided to give up on my sandwich.

I decided I had better leave, before Ronnie Duke exploded and go over to the Triablogue Theological Library to read for awhile. I picked up my copy of the Washington Post and started for the door after leaving a ten spot on the counter for Merle.

To my surprise in walked Art Rogers, Marty Duren, Wade Burleson, Ben Cole, Tom Ascol, RoyHargove, C B Scott, Jason Sampler, Wiley Drake and other folks. The group of 30 included both men and women. I had expected to see Art, Marty, Wade and Ben due to the fact that they all live on the same street in Blog Town that I do. I sometimes see these other folkes from time to time in my travels and I have always enjoyed the fresh brilliance of Wiley Drake at the annual Convention. He is always on the cutting edge of ministry and has probably handed out more "cups of cold water" in the name of Jesus than anyone I know.

I said hello to these folks and so did all the others that were already there with the exception of Ronnie Duke who was asking his daddy to buy him some Baby Ruth candy bars because he felt that they would make him hit more home runs.

I thought to myself; "Babe Ruth in all his indulgence never ate like this kid."

Merle asked the new comers for their orders. Ben Cole asked for a Latte with about a dozen additives in it. Merle mumbled something about "another hippie freak" as he wrote down the order. Ben started to respond to Merle but C B Scott rapped him on the head and said,"Remember all of the repenting you did in Memphis." Everyone gave an order except a couple of guys who told Merle that he could just give them whatever was pre-ordained for them to have. Merle never missed a beat and said; "Look, I am a Nazarene, therefore, I live day by day. Nothing is pre-ordained here except a 14" frying pan if people give me problems, so just give me a proper order. What will it be?"

At this point, Wade said to me; " Villa, what did you have?" "I had a ham and onion sandwich. Merle makes the best ones in the USA." Wade looked at Merle and said; "Merle, let me, in the spirit of cooperation, order a ham and onion sandwich for everyone in the place." Wes, Sister Dorcas and Jeff declined the offer due to their fast. Kevin said, "Sure and put some BBQ sauce on mine, Merle." With that he grinned at those in his booth. They glared back and Sister Dorcas promised to have him in court within 30 days.

Ronnie Duke walked over to Wade and asked; "Sir, may I have one also?" Wade smiled and said; "Sure son, there is room at the table for a Little Leaguer also." I looked at Wade and said; "Wade, you know not what you do."

Merle served everyone with the exception of Sister Dorcas, Wes, Jeff and me. Everyone was eating ham and onion sandwiches and drinking sweet tea except for Ben Cole who was drinking a Latte with his sandwich. Merle served him last and mumbled something about "hippies" while putting his food on the table. I could not hold out any longer, so I asked them how the Memphis Summit had gone. Art stated that they had developed what they called the "Memphis Declaration." Basically, as a group, they committed to repent of their sin against any and all to whom they have wrongly offended. Specifically, they repented toward God for failing Him in being what He had called them to be.

I looked at them and questioned; "No motions, No resolutions, No sermons, No call for terminations of officers, No nominations, not even one?" "No, not one" said Marty Duren.

"You just repented and called for accountability?" "Yes" responded several of the group.

"Praise the Lord," I said. "That is what I have been seeking for a long time. We need to repent in both an individual and corporate fashion before the Lord. How about we all pray right now? Let's just have a prayer meeting right here. Let's pray that YP is re-instated so he can plumb and work with the people he needs to in order to get the job done."

Merle came across the counter and said; "I will join you if you don't mind praying with a Nazarene." Tom said; "Sure, no problem." Wiley chimed in with; "I pray with all kinds of people everyday. I can pray with you, Merle."

What a prayer meeting we had. It reminded me of a Brush Arbor meeting. Just as Wade, Marty and Ben were trying to determine who was going to be the last "A-mener," you guessed it. Ronnie Duke began to "HURL CHUNKS OF THE PROJECTILE TYPE."

Jeff hit the door first, but stopped and said "after you Sister Dorcas." Sister Dorcas looked back at Roscoe Bigalow and said, "I am going to sue you for loading a lethal weapon in a public place, Roscoe."

Ben, Marty and Art jumped over the counter and out of a window over the grill. As Art went over the grill he scorched his backside and sang out, "I knew I should not have imitated Elvis while in Memphis by singing: Hunka, Hunka, Burning Love. This must be a judgment on me." Tom, C B, Jason, and Roy went out the side door. C B looked at Tom and said; "Surely, this was not pre-ordained." Tom said; "I will address this later in THE FOUNDERS JOURNAL, right now I have got to get a bath." Wes and everybody else went out the front door behind Jeff. Kevin Bussey came out last with Wade's plate in his hand . He said; "Wade, if you are not going to eat this, can I have it?" Wade said; "Kevin, in the most willing spirit of cooperation that I have ever uttered let me say, you may have not only my sandwich but also my french fries."

The only people left in the Local Cafe were Ronnie Duke who was continuing to hurl chuncks of onion, ham, Baby Ruths, hot fudge cake and ice cream; Roscoe who was trying to catch him and Merle who was chasing both Bigalows with his frying pan.

Ben Cole in his ever present refusal to be defeated by anything gathered the group together. He stated; "brothers and sisters we have just been persecuted by a chunking, projectiling, demon dressed in a Little League uniform, spewing filth and abomination at us all. Let me declare here and now that this is the second Diaspora. Let us go forth from Blog Town and share not only the results of the Memphis Summit but also the fact that persecution has already begun even before we got home from Memphis. Let us not be fearful. We must shout from the roof tops: 'Repent one and all for we are certainly soiled.' Now, someone give me a paper towel."

The reason for the above parable is just to have fun. I do not believe that having fun is sinful as long as it is clean and wholesome.

Let me also say, I am more than joyful with the results of the work of the Memphis 30 during the Memphis Summit. Our need in the SBC is repentance both individually and corporately. I have been saying this constantly since starting my blog. I, for one, am happy with the outcome and praising God. The Memphis 30 are my heroes. They did what they did knowing they would receive grief from friend and foe alike, but did it anyway. I hope what they did is repeated throughout the whole SBC.

When you get a chance come by my place in Blog Town and I will take you down to the Local Cafe and buy you a ham and onion sandwich, right after Merle gets the place cleaned up, that is.

Villa Rica


Blogger Jeff Richard Young said...

Dear V.R.,

If we weren't laughing about this whole big mess, we'd have to be crying. Both are needed!

Thanks for the fun.

Love in Christ,


8:11 PM  
Blogger art rogers said...

I haven't laughed that hard in a long time.

It's hard to read through tears of laughter.

Rare form, Villa!

10:05 PM  
Blogger Dorcas said...

Like Art, I laughed so hard I cried. What a great way to start a Saturday morning. Villa, you are a treasure. :)

6:51 AM  
Blogger Kevin Bussey said...


That is great! If I ate as much as you say, I would weigh 300 lbs! BTW, I don't eat onions.

Thanks for making me laugh

7:40 AM  
Blogger Me said...

Very funny indeed.

9:47 AM  
Anonymous David Goggin said...

I to laughed so hard tears ran down my face. My wife had to come see if I was ok. Can you imagine trying to explain it to
a person who does not blog in this
circle? Thank You V.R.

3:49 PM  
Blogger Jason Sampler said...


Nice story. I'll let you buy me a ham and onion sandwich any day of the week :)

Jason Sampler

6:44 PM  
Blogger TheMDude said...

Perhaps, Villa, we should ask you to explain the meaning of the parable?

3:54 AM  
Blogger Villa Rica said...

Brother The,

As was stated it was just for fun. There is nothing to explain. It was just for the joy of posting a light thing to give the folks that were there a moment to laugh after having done a noble thing.--nothing more--nothing less

Villa Rica

5:15 AM  
Blogger Tim Sweatman said...


How do you come up with this stuff? What exactly is in that "high test" of yours anyway?

10:35 PM  
Blogger Villa Rica said...

Brother Tim,

I am actually Dorcas Hawker. I posted in my true persona today on At the City Gates.

I could take the stress no longer. The pain has been just too much for me to deal with.

Working with children gives me all of my material. Ronnie Duke Bigalow is in my children's department. He hurled in extended session last week. That gave me my last idea.

Tim, as you can see from the above I simply have arrested development emotionally and mentally.

Friend of Dorcas Hawker and other writers of strange stuff.

Villa Rica

1:49 PM  
Blogger Dorcas said...

Okay so if I am Villa Rica then my earlier post calling myself a treasure is quite narcissistic. I think I need to repent.

7:24 PM  
Blogger andrea said...


It maybe several days after you posted, and I'm just now reading your post, but AGAIN you brought laughter to my day! Now granted, it was while I was eating lunch, so you can imagine as I continued to read the story and try to enjoy my chicken salad sandwich while the "little leaguer" was hurling - was, well, different! ;-)! Mine, stayed down - thank goodness!

9:51 AM  
Blogger Dorcas said...

Waiting and waiting and waiting ... when is the next post? Where has Villa Rica gone? He's been gone so long ... I have almost forgotten how to laugh. Dark, dark days. ;)

10:27 AM  
Blogger Cam Dunson said...

I'm with Dorcas, Villa, it's time.

11:48 AM  
Blogger Wes Kenney said...

Time? I'll say...

6:51 PM  

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